Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Home Repair

As a woman, and now as three women in the same house who don't know shit about home repair, we've been taken to the cleaners more than once, let me tell you...and we're not stupid!

It's just that electricians KNOW that no one will TOUCH anything electrical for fear of winding up deep fried. And, the plumbers helper is all I got for any plumbing problems. I heard that deep, slow gurgling sound in the toilet this morning and was immediately filled with dread. I don't even want to OPEN that chamber behind the toilet seat because I just don't want to know what's in there. I've heard it's just water...sure!

It's been so long since anyone cleaned the gutters on this house that there are wee trees growing in a row from the actual gutter. I try to sweep (because it's therapeutic for me which requires a whole nuther posting on THAT) but even a gentle breeze blows year's worth of old, decaying leaves onto my beautiful clean porch and deck. It's a no-win situation.

Lest you think we just don't try, we've called people who have come by and said, "Sure, I can fix that," and either never returned, didn't call back or quoted a price that even I knew was out of any reasonable orbit and we declined. When things went wrong in the house, we used to just sit in the living room and stare at each other as if an answer would pop up as a bubble above one of our heads.

We think we have now found our hero, however. We just had to replace our back deck because SalGal was starting to fall through the old, rotten wood whenever she went to water her precious plants and flowers. We found him through trial and error that would be too long to describe here and would probably shock you, but...

He drives a monster truck with a large trailer hitched to it with a sign on the back of the trailer that reads, "Anything I got ain't Worth Your Life." There is a gun barrel pointing at whomever is reading this sign. That's somehow comforting to me.

He is about 6 ft tall and weighs about 135 pounds. He wears a Harley doo rag tied in the back, has an enormous moustache and smokes a dangling Sherlock Holmes pipe. We have finally found our hero!

He built us a beautiful deck and when asked if he would handle any of our other Honey Do's on the list, he replied, "I'm all yours till I win the lottery, and then it's Katy bar the door."

Wonder who Katy is?



God knows I love larry too but he is a character. Here's a man who's job is building decks and the day before yesterday he didn't come because it was 45 degrees outside and he didn't want to catch a cold. He will kill you if you try to steel his hammer but God forbid that he should go outside if it's not hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk. In that way he is delicate.

Larry called today to say he is not coming to pick up the lumber from the old deck because it is drizzling outside and he doesn't want to get bronchitis as he is prone to it. You know, I'm okay with this and I understand and this is a typical example of how people deal with each other here in Austin. Can you imagine what a high-powered agent or businessman in Los Angeles would say to such excuses from a contractor? "What?! You don't want to get bronchitis? You hillbilly piece of shit-faced tobacco mouthed fraud - get your ass over here right now or you will never work in this town again!" But here in Austin we love the Larrys and they take care of us, fix our plumbing for fifty dollars cash and only steal a little from the cannabis plant in the back yard.

You stay inside Larry and take care of yourself and we will gladly wait for you to come and finish when the sun is shining and the football games are all over. He had to finish early the other day because as he said, 'Kick off is in an hour and a half and I have to go to the store for some supplies'. We 'A' type women are not helpless but I'm willing to put up with this as long as I'm not the one who has to unclip the dead rats from the traps in the attic.

So let's lift a glass of Shiner beer to the Larrys who's answer to our, 'That deck looks wonderful' is always a hat-tippin', 'It's my pleasure, ma'am'. God luv eem...

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